After what seemed like an eternity of debating and predicting, the United States Supreme Court by a 5-4 margin upheld the Affordable Care Act with Chief Justice John Roberts breaking ranks and joining the “Democratic” side of the aisle. At the center of the bill, the oft-discussed “individual mandate” survived as a tax instead of a penalty.
The upholding of the bill that has been widely known as Obamacare is seen as a big victory for the Obama administration and Republicans, led by Mitt Romney, dismissed the court’s ruling and began discussing the “repeal & replacing” of the bill.
But what the GOP does next following the court’s decision will be an interesting one to watch. I firmly believe that Americans are exhausted with Obamacare as a main political talking point and are ready to move on. Yet the Republican Party can not fully admit defeat as it represents weakness and is simply bad politics.
So what do they do next? It seems that the answer is in the first paragraph itself.
The main issue this election, no matter what the court’s ruling was today, will be centered around jobs and the economy. Mitt Romney has erased everything he once said and is in full-scale “I know the private sector” mode, that’s the one part of his record that he stands by.
What is one thing that Mitt Romney hates? Taxes. He hates them so much that he banishes some of his money into different nations overseas. He refuses to say how much he pays in taxes and it took plenty of arm-twisting to just release one year of his returns.
So naturally, now that the health care bill is seen as constitutional, you can expect Romney and the rest of the Republican Party to use Obamacare as a method of raising your taxes.
Yes, all Americans cringe at the thought of the word “taxes” and the GOP has a new reason to despise the bill that some of them once championed. They will make Obamacare synonymous with tax raises and another way that the “socialist” President is stealing your hard-working money. I can see Grover Norquist salivating at the prospect of this new attack ad already.
But “repeal & replace” has been used by the GOP before the court’s decision so it’s not exactly new terrain for them. Yet, the GOP will then have to offer a counterproposal to you know…actually replace the bill. Will Cantorcare or Ryancare really get off the ground even if the GOP’s long-shot efforts to repeal Obamacare works?
Unlikely. We are at the point where American citizens no longer want talking points but concrete ideas. The public can now finally associate the Affordable Care Act as a reality given to them by President Obama, regardless of their opinion of it.
We are still waiting on the GOP.